‘Miracle Baby’: One of the smallest premature infants ever heads home

Posted at 6:12 AM, Apr 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-12 06:12:57-04

VALHALLA, N.Y. — After eight months in various hospitals, one of the smallest premature babies in the country is finally going home.

Connor Florio is considered a “Miracle Baby.” When he was born in July at 26 weeks old, he weighed 11 ounces and could fit in the palm of your hand. After his parents, who live in Danbury, Conn., were told their child’s chance of survival was extremely low, they had Connor transferred to Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital's NICU in Westchester, New York.

In December, when he was stable and weighing 6.6 pounds, Connor was admitted to Blythedale Children’s Hospital. He had several medical conditions, including chronic lung disease, and started intense occupational, physical and feeding therapy.

"He got a lot of developmental care partly from us, but his family was almost here all the time and you can't beat that," said Dr. Dennis Davidson, Unit Chief for Blythedale's Infant and Toddler Unit.

While doctors and nurses prescribed medical treatments, his parents John and Jaimie Florio provided love and a sense of humor.

During the holidays, they dressed up Connor in costumes bought from Build-A-Bear, even though some of those outfits were still too big for the infant.

"It kind of takes your mind off from being away from family and being in the hospital during the holidays, and just lets you have a lot of fun with it," said Jamie Florio.

Connor progressed rapidly, and by early April he was thriving. He was finally dispatched from Blythedale this week and went home for the first time. He now weighs nearly 11 pounds, more than 10 times his birth weight.

"It was definitely scary when he was born, but to now he's everything I expected him to be and more," John Florio said.